Veterans – The Sons of Anzacs 2015 Memorial Tour Website is

Veterans – The Sons of Anzacs 2015 Memorial Tour Website is
www.vietnamtour2015.com.au
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The total cost has not been finalised at this stage, however deposits have already been paid , these will be fully refundable if you are unable to attend, these deposits are in recognition of your interest and they will also register you for EARLY BIRD DISCOUNTS.

For further interest and prior to the Tour,
In Queensland, at the Caloundra RSL on the 30 and 31st March 2014. Battlefield Briefings will be conducted by Brigadier N Weekes MC, Major L. Tranter (both survivors of Coral-Balmoral) and subject to posting, The RSM of the Army D. Ashley (Afghanistan) along with another significant hero which has been confirmed as Sgt. Bob Buick M.M.(Long Tan).

The Army Band Brisbane will be providing the entertainment.

In NSW the concert and battlefield briefings will be held at the ROOTY HILL RSL, with the same actors and the Army Band Sydney will provide the entertainment.

The dates for Rooty Hill are 10th and 11th August 2014.

There will be a nominal entry fee and every dollar collected will be given to a charity, either the RSL Anzac appeal and or Legacy.

On behalf of the committee of SAVMT
Gary Phillips
Melbourne and other states venues are yet to be confirmed advice will be forthcoming…be prepared.

IF YOU WANT TO KNOW HOW FORTUNATE YOU ARE, COME AND LISTEN. FOR THOSE THAT WERE THERE, LEARN WHAT HAPPENED TO YOUR MATES AND THOSE WHO WERE NOT THERE, LEARN WHAT HAPPENED.
And be entertained by the Military band.

Guidelines on the Special Rate and Intermediate Rate of Disability Pension

The attached letter is to advise that the Repatriation Commission has endorsed revised Guidelines on the Special Rate and Intermediate Rate of disability pension under the Veterans’ Entitlement Act 1986 (VEA). The revised Guidelines are titled CM6882 Special Rate and Intermediate Rate of pension and are now available in the Department of Veteran Affairs Consolidated Library of Information and Knowledge.  Click Here

Letter to ESO RT Members Regarding Special Rate and Intermediate Rate Guidelines – 14 JUN 2013

 

 

SECFOR Newsletter Issue 3.

Click on the first page below to view Security Force 1’s  newsletter in full.

PENSION INCREASE FOR VETERAN COMMUNITY

Veterans, their partners, war widows and widowers across Australia will see an increase to their pensions and income support payments from 20 March 2013.

State President’s Newsletter – Edition 1

Click on the first page below to view State President Terry Meehan’s newsletter in full.

 

AUSTRALIA’S HEROES IN THE SKIES REMEMBERED

Friday, 1 March 2013                                                                                                                         VA016

 

 

The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Warren Snowdon, has called on all Australians to remember the efforts of the men who served for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) during the Battle of the Bismarck Sea, as tomorrow commemorates the 70th anniversary of the battle.

 

“The Battle of the Bismarck Sea was a crucial Allied attack which prevented thousands of Japanese reinforcements arriving in New Guinea. The courage, skill and tenacity shown by members of the RAAF during this important Allied victory will forever be remembered.

 

“Working in coordination with the United States Army Air Forces, RAAF aircrew fought tirelessly in poor weather conditions, demonstrating excellent planning and coordination to deliver a devastating blow to the Japanese,” Mr Snowdon said.

 

On 2 March 1943, the Battle of the Bismarck Sea erupted as Allied forces attacked enemy transport ships making their way to New Guinea to reinforce their troops after recent defeats at Milne Bay, the Kokoda track, the Beachheads and Wau.

 

Thick cloud cover originally shielded the Japanese ships making their way to New Guinea but, as skies cleared, a formation of B17 Flying Fortresses attacked the convoy. These attacks continued throughout the day in relays, with several ships being damaged and at least one transport sunk. It was however the following day, 3 March, when Allied forces were most successful as skies were clear.

 

On the morning of 3 March, RAAF Beaufort torpedo bombers attacked the convoy followed closely by 13 RAAF Beaufighters from Milne Bay that inflicted damage to the convoy. Following further attacks by the United States Army Air Forces, the final aerial attacks resulted in the sinking of all eight enemy transport ships, four escorting destroyers and damage to a further four destroyers.

 

Japanese forces suffered horrendous losses with more then 2,800 killed, while the battle cost the Allies 13 lives and eight wounded.

 

“Records show that few Allied aircraft were lost during this Battle, however we should remember the mental and physical strain placed on pilots and crew during such battles. Forced to fly long hours, with little rest in harsh environments, these Australians did our country proud.

 

“They didn’t take a backwards step and asked for nothing in return. It is only right that we remember their efforts today, on the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Bismarck Sea,”  Mr Snowdon said.

 

Media inquiries:      Minister Snowdon: Marcus Butler 0417 917 796

Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

National President’s Newsletter No 2 of 2013

Here is the latest newsletter from National President Ken Doolan. Click here to read it in full, the first paragraphs of Item 1

Letter from Prime Minister Gillard.   Members of the League will recall that I wrote to
the Prime Minister on 4 October 2012 forwarding a document titled ‘An RSL
Perspective’. The Prime Minister replied to this letter on 4 February 2013 thanking
the League for the submission and noting that the “Australian Government
recognises the role of the RSL as having a specific place in Australia’s identity and
supporting our veterans and families of conflicts past and present.”
The League asked the Prime Minister to ‘respond to our detailed submission about
the indexation of military superannuation and the separation of military
superannuation schemes from other Commonwealth superannuation schemes’……..

Read more here

VE Day Invitation

“Allies Memorial” South Eastern District RSL, 42-50 Oxlade Drive New Farm.  SATURDAY 11th May 2013
commencing at 1000hrs.

NEW CENTRE FOR YOUNG VETERANS

A new centre offering young veterans and their families a place to relax and access support services, such as counselling, has opened in Frankston, Victoria today.  Opening the Frankston Young Veterans and Families Wellbeing Centre, the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Warren Snowdon, said the Centre was the result of years of hard work and dedication by the local RSL and community members.  “This Centre is a first in Australia and ensures that the young veterans in Frankston have a welcoming place to socialise with mates and access support services for themselves and their families,” he said.

Mr Snowdon praised the Frankston RSL for its efforts to continue to evolve its traditional service model to better meet the needs of younger veterans and their families.  “I congratulate the Frankston RSL and its members for developing new and innovative ways to engage the younger veteran community. I hope this centre will inspire more ex-service organisations to do the same,” he said.

Frankston RSL President Brent Clyne says the Centre is a way to reach out to contemporary veterans and their families.  “It is a place for all young veterans, including those who’ve served in Iraq, Afghanistan and peace-keeping operations, and their families, to call their own.  Young veterans have special needs and in the past veterans hadn’t always accessed the care they needed. The Young Veterans and Families Wellbeing Centre will provide a place of trust, a safe place where young vets can have a chat and reach out for assistance if they need it.”

Mr Clyne said the Centre will be alcohol and judgement free and, although based on the strong traditions of the RSL, is geared towards a new generation of veterans with different needs.

The Australian Government provided $73,000 in funding towards the Centre, through the Veteran and Community Grants program.

For more information on the Centre, join its Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/FrankstonYVC/.

For more information on Veteran and Community Grants visit www.dva.gov.au/grants.

Media inquiries: Minister Snowdon: Marcus Butler 02 6277 7820
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

National President’s Newsletter No 7 of 2012

1. Ballot for ANZAC Cove 25 April 2015. On Thursday 27 September 2012 the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs the Hon Warren Snowdon MP issued a press release advising of a limit of 8000 on the number of Australians who could be allowed access to the ANZAC Day commemorations at Gallipoli on 25 April 2015. This press release also advised that there would be a ballot for these places after a period of public consultation. This period of consultation will close on 30 November 2012.

The National Executive will debate the content of an overall RSL response to the ballot proposal at the forthcoming meeting in Canberra on 13 November 2012. Factors which will be taken into account are:

•the reality that the number of descendants of Australian Gallipoli veterans is unknown but is estimated to be as high as 1 million

•the fact that most Australians who have attended the Dawn Service at Gallipoli over the past decade have been young Australians backpacking in Europe

•the fact that ANZAC Cove is in a relatively remote area of Turkey requiring most who attend the Dawn Service to travel there by bus from Istanbul before camping out on ground sheets and sleeping bags

•the sometimes inhospitably cold and wet conditions at the commemoration site at that time of the year

The content of the submission decided upon by the National Executive will be posted on the RSL National web site. Individual Members, Sub Branches or Branches may opt to make separate submissions to Government on this topic.

2. Adverse decisions by Department of Health and Aging contested. I wrote to the Minister for Health and Ageing, the Hon. Tanya Plibersek MP on 27 October urging reconsideration of two recent adverse decisions of the Department of Health and Ageing. The first was the decision to remove the Medicate Provider number 10315 for Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment (HBOT). I made the point that notwithstanding informal advice from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs that holders of Gold or White Cards for specific conditions will still be able to access HBOT based on clinical need, the decision will still leave those ex-service personnel without a DVA Medical Treatment Card liable for the full cost of treatment.

I explained to the Minister that whilst the League understands that patients suffering from cancer or diabetes will still have access to HBOT, those ex-service personnel who do not have these diseases will be required to pay the full cost of HBOT treatment.

The second decision about which we have concern is that to close the Medicare Chronic Disease Dental Scheme. Whilst we acknowledge that dental arrangements funded by DVA are not affected by this closure; and that members of the ex-service community with a Gold or White Card for specific conditions will continue to receive dental treatment under DVA arrangements, the League considers this decision disadvantages those ex-service personnel with a DVA Medical Treatment Card.

We await the Minister’s response.

3. Military Court of Australia Bill 2012. The RSL has continued to steadfastly oppose this legislation for the reasons explained in earlier newsletters. Recent events suggest its future is uncertain. The formal position is that the legislation remains before the House of Representatives. It was placed on the parliamentary business paper for consideration on Wednesday 31 October but, in the event, was not debated. Since then it has been difficult to ascertain quite what is intended. Some informal advice indicates the Bill was shunted out for consideration at a future sitting of the House of Representatives. Other advice suggests the Bill has to all intents and purposes been withdrawn because of the substantial changes that would be needed to accommodate issues raised during the Parliamentary Committee hearings into the proposed legislation. There is also speculation that the Bill will not reappear during the life of the current parliament.

We will continue to monitor the situation closely.

4. Attendance at Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association 2012 Conference. I attended this conference at Wellington during the period 14 to 17 October 2012 at the invitation of the National President of the RNZRSA. At their specific request my address to the New Zealand conference focused solely on the ANZAC Centenary and on how our two organisations can best work together towards the common commemorative goal.

5. Visits to RSL Sub Branches and WA State Branch Conference. During the past month I have had the privilege of visiting the Cobram/Barooga Sub Branch straddling the Murray River between New South Wales and Victoria; the Stephens Sub Branch in suburban Brisbane; the WA State Branch Conference at Perth; and the Gosford RSL Club for the annual conference of the Extremely Disabled War Veterans. I thank all RSL members who made me so welcome on all these occasions and for the admirable work they are doing in promoting the objects of the League. It was most heartening to meet new and younger members of the League on some of these occasions and as is evidenced by the content of this newsletter, we continue to be very active on behalf of both the ex-service community and those who are currently serving in the ADF.

6. Indexation of Military Superannuation. As yet there has been no response to my letter to the Prime Minister which formed part of my National President’s Newsletter No 6 of 2012. There has however been a development in the Parliament with the Independent Member for Kennedy, the Hon. Bob Katter MP introducing a Private Member’s Fair Indexation Bill into the House of Representatives. Mr Katter raised this possibility with me when I called on him at Parliament House when seeking his support for the RSL stance on the Military Court of Australia Bill 2012. I have since had informal discussions with other members of Parliament about the prospects for Mr Katter’s Bill and will seek to keep RSL members advised of developments.